Sources: Havertz won’t extend Chelsea deal

    James Olley is a senior soccer writer for Read his archive here and follow him on Twitter: @JamesOlley.

Chelsea are under pressure to drop their asking price for Arsenal target Kai Havertz after being informed he has no intention of signing a new contract, sources have told ESPN.

Arsenal are interested in pursuing a move for the 24-year-old but have so far proved reluctant to meet their London rivals’ £70 million valuation of Havertz.

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Sources have told ESPN that Havertz is open to joining Arsenal and the club do not view his existing wage at Chelsea — thought to be around £220,000-a-week — as prohibitive to a transfer.

They have had one offer rejected so far but are expected to return with an improved bid.

It remains to be seen whether Bayern Munich enter the running having previously expressed an interest in Havertz.

Chelsea will hope Bayern table a bid to help drive the price up, but regardless Havertz is believed to have informed the club he has no desire to extend his contract, which expires in 2025.

Sources have told ESPN that during conversations, Arsenal have indicated that in addition to operating as a No. 10 ten or No. 8, they see Havertz as capable of playing in any of three attacking positions in an interchangeable forward line at the top of a 4-3-3 system. Havertz’s versatility is a big attraction for Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta, who has played a personal role in negotiations.

Sources have told ESPN there is surprise at Chelsea’s asking price given they signed Havertz for £71m in September 2020, and he has endured a mixed spell at Stamford Bridge.

Havertz scored the winning goal in the 2021 Champions League final but struggled to find consistency in his performances, scoring 32 goals in 139 games in all competitons.

Chelsea are also under a degree of pressure to raise funds before June 30 as they seek to mitigate losses resulting from spending around £600m on players only to miss out on qualifying for any European qualification next season.

Havertz’s valuation is the same as the price Chelsea are demanding for Mason Mount, who is attracting interest from Manchester United. Sources told ESPN that Chelsea rejected a bid of £40m from United last week.

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